Syn Cyr: Bristol’s new student led music label
We went to the label’s launch party
Syn Cyr is a brand new, student led music agency hoping to promote Bristol talent with a student-centric outlook.
To get a better idea of the label’s personality, we went along to the label’s launch party at the Small Horse, where they put on their first showcase of home grown Bristol talents.
Before the show started I had a chat with the founders of Syn Cyr (Timi, Tami and Esmee) about their agency and how they’re going to help talented Bristol students thrive in the music industry.
What are your jobs in the agency? What do you all do?
Tami: “We all share – talk to promoters, email everyone.”
Tami: “I guess I do the artist relations”
Esmee: “We do all the organising and ticket sales together”
Timi: “We reach out to artists and book the venues for them too.”
You’re a music agency, how would you describe what that is?
Esmee: “We find artists or artists come and find us. We try to book gigs for them – this is the first gig that we’re doing. This is the launch night, all of the artists that have approached us are performing and we choose which artists we want to represent.”
Tami: “Our role is promoting organic, fan based acts. Like today, the people performing here are going to gain fans and they’re going to want to listen to their Soundclouds and their online platforms. We’re going to do a press kit for each artist and start adding to that the more gigs and content they do, and then they can have something to send out to record labels and blogs. Blogs and radio stations will wanna work with us, and then we have producers and songwriters working with us.”
“For people just starting out and haven’t been able to produce their own music, we’re gonna provide them with people who can help them start producing their own content, so we can add it to their press kits and have things to send out.”
Timi: “Our focus is students, we’re trying to help students who wanna do education but also want to be involved with music. We wanna help people who are at uni to find opportunities because not everyone knows how you get involved with record labels or what you do to perform so we’re just trying to help people as much as we can.”
What made you want to start the agency?
Timi: “We’ve all had interest in music for a long time throughout our lives. I did theatre in school, Esmee’s always wanted to do music, it runs in her family and stuff. Me and Tami organised a fundraising event at the end of last year and Esmee came and we spoke about how much we enjoyed doing it and how she wanted to get involved.”
“From that we thought, why just do gigs, why not actually bring together good organic artists who are in Bristol and are students and have regular opportunities for performance and regular recruitment, and that’s where we got to today!”
What other experience have you done in music to build up to this?
Tami: “I produce my own music and I have Soundcloud. I’m basically on a scholarship and you have to fund raise so I started doing an open mic event, so that’s given us the experience of doing this. Obviously this is on a much larger scale, but that went really well and then other than that I’ve been doing loads of gigs and throughout life like school plays and performance opportunities. It’s good that we have an artist on the team that understands what artists need.”
“That makes us different to other places as we have a vested interest in getting the best opportunities, because I’m not gonna let any of them do something that I wouldn’t do and that wouldn’t benefit me so I think that makes us stand out.”
Esmee: “I have personally have always wanted to go into music but didn’t think that I could actually work in the music business unless I was an artist or something so I did dance for most of my life but now I realised I can actually go into management.”
Are there any acts which you’re particularly excited to work with or to promote?
Tami: “There’s obviously some people on there who are further ahead than others, some people are ahead of me. We have one who’s doing BBC Introducing, and he’s done a festival for BBC Introducing as well – Toby Johnson.”
Timi: “He’s just posted his Mahogony sessions which is really massive, Amber’s got an EP on the way, Tami’s working on her EP. Everyone’s so talented and unique in their own kind of way so there’s no competition. It’s not like there’s two sounds fighting to be the best performer.”
Tami: “The ones we’re most excited about are the ones who have original content. Don’t even have to have loads of original content, just an interest in writing your own stuff and the ability to write your own stuff.”
“Because some people just want to do covers and that’s a bit boring and I don’t really agree with how the music industry is, like other people writing music for you and you just sing what someone else has written for you.”
Timi: “A lot of people want to write but don’t know how, so we’re putting them in touch with people who write music and producers. We want to raise all-round artists, not just people who go into the studio and sing and leave. We want to raise good talent.”
What do you think about Bristol’s music scene generally, and how do you fit into that music scene?
Esmee: “I think it’s very indie to be honest. It’s based on indie music and punk rock bands”
Timi: “There’s obviously a lot of DJs and dance music. There’s a big scene. When we were thinking about it, we just thought there’s nothing like Syn Cyr in Bristol with contemporary commercial artists that’s all inclusive.”
Esmee: “Because everyone is different, no one is going to stick out so we thought it would be perfect for the gap in the market.”
We also caught up with a couple of the acts working with Syn Cyr.
Molly Gorman and Lewis Rennie-Campbell from the talented “Milk Bottle” were kind enough to give us an interview.
What do you guys perform?
Molly: “Covers and we’re gona start doing our own originals. Mostly soul jazz covers”
What stage are you guys at?
Molly: W”e’ve got things on Soundcloud and looking to sign to a record label.”
What do you think of Bristol’s music scene?
Molly: “Bristol has such a cool music scene, and a great jazz soul scene. It has a bit of everything – so many places like the Louisianna where we really want to play.”
Lewis: “There are so many different styles of music to explore, especially jazz. Rise Records has live music every week and there is always live bands playing.”
Is performing what you want to do with your life?
Molly: I feel like my whole life I’ve been realistic and put education first, but I want to keep doing this and see what happens.
Lewis: if I’m good enough I’d do music as my career. I wouldn’t mind.
Psychedelic rock band Insomnichord (Rollo Elison, Harrison Wright, Lewis Harrington, Mischa Dhar, Zak de la Bedoyere and Matt Ballone) had a different view about Bristol’s music scene, however.
What kind of music do you guys play, and when did you start?
“Psych rock. We’ve started a year ago, but been properly together about 6/7 months.”
What gigs have you done so far?
“We’ve played like 4 gigs in the past month, banding around. We’ve played places like The Exchange and Old England.”
What do you think of Bristol’s current music scene?
“It’s a shit music scene. There’s only really a couple other bands like Van Zeller, who aren’t very good.”
“The big thing is electro shit but it’s about time that Bristol got a big smack in the balls with some psychedelic rock, we’re gonna be the guys in shining armour – but not quite shining – sequin armour.”
Do you think Syn Cyr will help to improve the music scene?
“Syn Cyr seem keen to get a scene going, they’ll definitely help”
What bands do you guys look up to?
“The Horrors, Pond, Parliament, Funkadelic…and Miley Cyrus”
Insomnichord then made Bristol proud with a sequin-clad, synth heavy mind-altering set straight from the 70s; check out their single and video below:
You can find Syn Cyr’s Facebook page here.